Type 2 diabetes affects more than 29 million Americans, and can strike anyone, even famous athletes and Hollywood A-listers.
Type 2 diabetes is a condition in which the body’s blood sugar levels rise higher than normal because your body doesn’t use insulin properly. (Insulin is the hormone that typically regulates blood sugar levels by moving glucose from the bloodstream into the cells.) When your blood glucose level is too high, the consequences can include a whole host of health problems, from hypertension to heart attacks and kidney disease.
But what causes type 2 diabetes in the first place? Being overweight, older than 45, or having a family history of the disease are all key factors that can put you at a higher risk.
American Idol judge and music producer Randy Jackson, whose father was diabetic, was diagnosed with diabetes when he weighed over 200 pounds. Celebrity Chef Paula Deen, who is famous for her high-calorie, high-fat Southern recipes, revealed that she had type 2 diabetes at age 64.
For Tom Hanks, who was diagnosed at age 60, yo-yo dieting may have been a factor. He gained 30 pounds for his part in A League of Their Own, and lost 50 for his role in Cast Away, among other parts that required weight chances.
Since excess weight can heighten your risk of developing insulin resistance, you can help protect yourself by sticking to a healthy diet that includes foods that help fight diabetes (especially if you’re one of the 86 million Americans who have been diagnosed with prediabetes).
In this video, we show you 13 celebrities who’ve been diagnosed with diabetes. Some may surprise you. Looking for more info about diabetes? We have the answers to all your type 2 questions here.